|In DAI, there are moments when we see our companions clearly, as they
experience self-doubt and wonder if, hey, they're missing something about Solas.
NOTE: This post is part of a continuing series ("Meaningful Banters"), in which I shine a spotlight on especially important or revealing moments that occur between companions in banter, during the course of the games. SPOILERS GALORE for Dragon Age: Inquisition!
Our companions in Dragon Age: Inquisition are a smart bunch, and let's remember that they spend over 18 months together fighting evil, bantering, befriending, quarreling, flirting, teasing, and falling in (and out of) love, so it's interesting to go through their banter comments and dialogues and to realize that, seriously, many of them show at least a momentary suspicion of Solas. There are a surprising number of little moments where we find an instant of indecision, of wavering on that narrow balance, when you can see them, visibly, however briefly, wonder if maybe they're missing something about the quiet mage in their company all those months.
The Iron Bull:
|Bull knows something's up with Solas. First moment to last.
Iron Bull: I've seen self-taught warriors. Even the good ones have something awkward in their style, something that clunks. I don't get that from you. Maybe magic is different.Banter #2:
Solas: Or without magical training, you cannot notice the parts of my magic that "clunk".
Iron Bull: Not the quiet elven mage, though. No frills. Nothing to give you away. Half our targets never even see you coming.I'll always adore the interactions between Solas and Bull, not least because I think both men are incredibly similar beneath the skin. They're both able to compartmentalize, they're both hot and cold, they're both hiding significant aspects of who they are and what they want, and they're both absolutely able to make the hard (brutal) choices when necessary.
Solas: I shall take that as a compliment.
Iron Bull: If you like.
Suspicions of the Other Companions
|Viv never catches on about Bull, but she surely suspects Solas.
"I don't know what to make of Solas. So much knowledge and so little personal history... I find that... peculiar, don't you?"I love this. Viv's so sharp, and while she's sometimes incredibly narrow-minded, not much gets past her. As here.
"Solas? Pfft. His head's crammed up a thousand years ago."This one's so on-point it's positively scary. BECAUSE IT'S TRUE.
|I love Cass's suspicions. She's just so "Law and Order" about
it: "So... Solas... where were you when the Conclave blew?"
Cassandra: I've wondered: How did you know to approach us, Solas? The Breach opened, we were scrambling and barely had time to think... and there you were.This is terrific, because it spotlights how clever and insightful our Seeker is, and she's not always credited for her perceptiveness. But here, she's definitely showing that maybe his cover story wasn't quite as smooth as he might have thought.
Solas: I went to see the Breach for myself. I did not know you would be there.
Cassandra: You must not have been far away.
Solas: I was not. I'd come to hear of the Conclave, but did not want to get close.
Cassandra: Hmm. Lucky for us, then.
|Dorian's so, so smart, and DAI doesn't always show this, but this
is a definite occasion on which we remember how smart our
handsome Tevinter companion actually is.
Dorian: That orb Corypheus carries... are you certain it's of elven origin, Solas?I love this dialogue exchange, and how much it's a reminder that Dorian is at heart a beautiful scholar and fellow geek. He may have much to learn, but he's also a thinker who's incredibly smart. He forgets nothing. And the final "Hmm" from Dorian here is perfection. I think it's obvious his mind is racing and he's already considering the possibilities.
Solas: I believe so. Why do you ask?
Dorian: There are paintings in the Magisterium's archives of men holding similar orbs. They were depictions of a time long before the magisters. The ancient Dreamers, perhaps. The texts called those orbs "somnaborium"--"vessels of dreams." Could they be the same thing?
Solas: Perhaps. The humans of ancient times took much from the elves.
Dorian: And Corypheus isn't far removed from the time. Hmm.
Cole knows all, but he also trips up on his own knowledge a few times, and it's fascinating, as noted here below.
Cole: You're different, Solas. Sharper. You're in both places.
Solas: I visit the Fade regularly. Perhaps you are sensing traces of it.
|Cole loves and trusts Solas, but he still reveals incredibly
private details, in spite of himself.
Cole: You are quiet, Solas.Of course, as writer Patrick Weekes has noted, Cole always knew the truth about Solas and didn't judge him, reveal his origins, or even find them suspicious or worth mentioning. But I love that these banters take place in front of their companions, and what they inadvertently reveal.
Solas: Unless I have something to say, yes.
Cole: No, inside. I don't hear your hurt as much. Your song is softer, subtler, not silent but still.
Solas: How small the pain of one man seems when weighed against the endless depths of memory, of feeling, of existence. That ocean carries everyone. And those of us who learn to see its currents move through life with their fewer ripples.
Cole: There is pain though, still within you.
Solas: And I never said that there was not.
"Ignore this! Look Over There!"
|Blackwall's too busy defending potential suspicions
to entertain any of his own.
I love these little glimpses of how Solas's story, smart as it is on the surface, has these little cracks in it. He had to act quickly, so I like that his cover story isn't 100% -- and that our companions are smart and special enough to, just occasionally, say, "Hmmmm..."
What other instances have you seen where Solas gives himself away? Have I missed any?